The Real Housewives of Orange County has gotten a downgrade, at least one of its cast members has. On July 2, it was announced that Vicki Gunvalson would not return to the RHOC as a housewife. Instead, she’s been demoted to a “friend.” It looks like Braunwyn Winham-Burke will take Gunvalson’s place as an official housewife. The rest of the cast includes Kelly Dodd, Gina Kirschenheitr, Emily Simpson and Shannon Storms Beador.
While Gunvalson is the most recent housewife to find herself demoted, she certainly isn’t the first. Do you remember when these housewives were dropped as official wives and became just friends?
Luann De Lesseps was demoted before season 6 of the Real Housewives of New York
The Real Housewives of New York cast members have come and gone and come back again for years. Luann De Lesseps is no different. The countess was demoted to a friend for Season 6 after she spent the first five years of the series as a housewife. She was back full-time for Season 7.
De Lesseps has made headlines in recent months. The troubled reality TV star was sued by her own family when she failed to set up trust funds for her two children, Victoria and Noel. Setting up trust funds for the two kids was a condition of her 2009 divorce decree.
Danielle Staub stirred up drama as a friend during season 8 of Real Housewives of New Jersey
No one in the world can forget the drama that was Danielle Staub. Not even the tension and drama she created on the show could save her from a demotion. Staub starred on the show for two seasons before making a quick exit. She returned in Season 8, but the housewife title wasn’t in the cards. Staub returned as a “friend.”
Staub’s troubled relationship with Teresa Giudice was a big part of her storyline on RHONJ, and it looks like it will continue to be. Even with Staub playing a role in the show over the last several years, she remains a friend, rather than a housewife.
Camille Grammer returned as a friend on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills
Camille Grammer seemed like a perfect fit for The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, and she was for two seasons. The ex-wife of Kelsey Grammer was downgraded to a friend after Season 2 and left the show entirely after Season 3.
Grammer did return eventually, but she never regained Housewife status. According to Us Magazine, Grammer enjoyed being a friend, and would happily continue on that path. It doesn’t look like a full-time gig will be in her future again.
Jacqueline Laurita was dropped to a friend role during Season 6 of the Real Housewives of New Jersey
Laurita was a housewife for the first five seasons of the show. With serious family ties to other castmates, Laurita’s designation made perfect sense, but she didn’t exactly bring the drama. The mother of three was demoted for Season 6 but brought back as a full-time housewife for Season 7. Laurita exited the show for good at the end of Season 7.
Laurita and her husband Chris have moved on from New Jersey all together now, according to Bravo. The former reality TV star and her family have headed back to Nevada, which is were she originally hailed from before marrying Chris. Laurita’s oldest daughter, Ashlee, stayed behind. She is now married with a son of her own.